B.A. in Physics Requirements

Group 1. General Education Basic, Area, and Integrative Requirements

Students may choose to graduate under the General Education Basic, Area, and Integrative requirements and graduation requirements in force at the time they entered the UH System, when they entered UH Hilo, or when they graduate, provided there is no break in enrollment.

Students should meet with their academic advisor to ensure that they enroll in courses that will enable them to meet these requirements as well as requirements for the major and for graduation. Some courses may meet both General Education requirements and major requirements.

The new GE basic, core, and integrative requirements and lists of certified courses are posted on the General Education website.

Group 2. Major Requirements (70 credits)

Please note any course pre-requisites.

  1. Required Courses in Physics (38)
    • PHYS 170-170L Gen Phys I: Mechanics (4), Gen Phys I Lab (1)
    • PHYS 171-171L Gen Phys II: Elec & Magnetism (4), Gen Phys II Lab (1)
    • PHYS 270 Gen Phys III: Intro Modern Phy (3)
    • PHYS 330 Electromagnetism (4)
    • PHYS 331 Optics (3)
    • PHYS 341 Thermodynamics (3)
    • PHYS 371 Classical Mechanics (3)
    • PHYS 430 Quantum Mechanics I (4)
    • PHYS 495A-495B Seminar (1), Seminar (1)
    • An additional 6 credits from PHYS 300-499 (6)
  2. Required Courses in Mathematics (20)
    • MATH 205 Calculus I (4)
    • MATH 206 Calculus II (4)
    • MATH 231 Calculus III (3)
    • MATH 232 Calculus IV (3)
    • MATH 300 Ordinary Diff Equations (3)
    • And one additional elective MATH course approved in writing by the Physics Department and totaling 3 credits (3)
  3. Required Natural Science Electives (12)
    • 12 credits selected from Natural Sciences as approved in writing by the Physics Department. 1

Total Semester Hours Required for the B.A. in Physics

120 Credits


  1. Students must earn at least a 2.0 GPA in courses required for the major.
  2. At least 36 semester hours must be earned in courses at the 300- and 400-level.

  3. To earn a Bachelor of Arts degree in Physics, students must fulfill the requirements for the major and meet all of the University’s other baccalaureate degree requirements. (Please see the Baccalaureate Degree Requirements in this Catalog.)

  4. Students wishing to make timely progress toward graduation are urged to pay careful attention to all degree requirements.
  5. In addition, when planning a schedule of courses, it is imperative to be aware of course prerequisites and the frequency with which courses are offered. This information is available in the course listings in this Catalog.
  6. To ensure progress toward degree completion, students are urged to meet with an advisor each semester before registering.

  1. Students are encouraged strongly to meet with their advisors regarding Natural Science elective courses appropriate to their career aspirations.